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Impassioned student demonstrators joined a world movement for climate change awareness in a march from City Hall to Cabinet yesterday.

David Burt, the Premier, alongside Walter Roban, the Deputy Premier, met the crowd to hear their call for swift changes in policy.

Bermuda’s Fridays for Future demonstration took inspiration from the international school strikes for climate started by student activists.

Bermuda High School student organisers Salayah Stange and Katarina Rance were joined by students from Warwick Academy and Saltus Grammar School as they chanted slogans to passers-by on Church Street.

Salayah said her group followed the example of Fridays for Future environmental demonstrations in Sweden

“It inspired our own march on May 23, which was our first,” the year ten student said. “We got this rally today with the other schools.”

Katarina, 15, said they had been impressed by Greta Thunberg, the Swedish teenage activist, now 16, who began a movement that brought out 1.6 million demonstrators in 168 countries. “Climate change is coming quickly and we only have a few years left to act. Last year, she started the striking protests for climate change. It’s become a global thing.”

Katarina said she had been studying in Germany when the student movement gained momentum.

“We decided to bring it to Bermuda,” she added.

The Bermuda activists called for the banning of single-use plastics, switching to renewable energy from fossil fuels, and the declaring of “climate emergency”.

Chants included “You will die of old age; we will die of climate change” as cars honked horns in support.

Mia Baccaglio, 13, of Warwick Academy, told The Royal Gazette: “I don’t see a future at this rate. Bermuda will be destroyed.”

Fellow student Olivia Buchanan, 13, called for the Government to adopt the 2016 Paris Agreement on reining in greenhouse gas, while Giselle Soares, 12, said: “Our entire lifestyle has to change.”

Jibril Taylor, 13, said: “I’m here because I want to change my future. Some people don’t believe in climate change. They will when they’re under water.”

Cardiff University student Brittany Siddle, 18, who held a sign by the street, said she was “raising awareness that we don’t have much time left”.

“It starts with this,” she added.

Giselle Conception, 16, from Saltus, said that “social media connected everyone”, and the movement’s goals were “doable and can be achieved if we educate as many as possible”.

Demonstrators have signed a petition to support the Bermuda Better Energy Plan, which calls for 70 per cent renewable energy for Bermuda by 2040.

Greenrock and BeSolar also turned out to show their support. More than 100 marchers headed through Hamilton to the Cabinet office on Front Street, where Mr Burt told them: “I want to encourage you to continue to make sure your voices are heard on issues of the environment.”

Mr Roban spoke with demonstrators as the Minister of Home Affairs, who hold responsibility for environmental matters.

He told them: “This is not an issue that has been away from the mind of the Government. We are committed to renewable energy being our chief source of power for the future.”

Mr Roban told the crowd that the Government was also committed to removing all single-use plastics from sale by 2022. A demonstrator shouted “Sooner!” and Mr Roban answered: “Sooner, if it can be achieved. I hope you will be helping with that.”

A girl with a placard asked: “Why is it up to us?”

Mr Roban told the crowd: “You make the difference. It’s your future — I want to work with you.”

Grammy award-winning singer, songwriter and producer Mark Anthony Myrie prominently known as Buju Banton will bring his arena busting “Long Walk to Freedom” tour to the global stage as part of the Danger Zone Border Splash Benefit Concert Series (“Border Splash”) between Europe, Africa, and the Americas. Border Splash is produced by the Bermuda-based Emperial Group of Companies in partnership with the Danger Zone Music Group (Los Angeles, CA/Jamaica), Da Beatz Promotion (Jamaica), Cutting Edge Technology Solutions (Athens, GA), Urban Broadcast TV Network (New York, NY),  Big Regga (Zurich, Switzerland) and Shlepp Entertainment Ltd (UK).

Border Splash is designed to commemorate the 400-year anniversary of the first African American arrivals in Virginia during August 1619 by focusing the attention of the hip hop, dancehall and reggae worlds on cross border issues of peacemaking, environmental awareness, and emergency preparedness. The concert series will undertake to raise funding for green bonds that help to build “future proof”eco-villages in vulnerable communities that are increasingly susceptible to hurricane risks and rising sea levels, especially in countries bordering the Caribbean Sea, the Gulf of Mexico, the Mid-Atlantic and the Indian Ocean.

Border Splash will be officially launched in Europe on July 31, 2019 at the SEG Arena in Geneva, Switzerland to highlight the global significance of one of our leading beneficiaries the “Circle of Humanity” which represents  one of the earliest recorded peace treaties of antiquity between the indigenous peoples of the Hopi, Kikuyu, Tibetan and Swiss nations.

The Kikuyu elders at Mount Kenya – itself a UNESCO World Heritage Site – have affirmed that Jamaica has a key role to play in the Circle of Humanity and their traditional prophecies concerning Mount Kenya. The Border Splash pays tribute to this vision by making reggae music – now also listed as a UNESCO cultural treasure – the focal point of our humanitarian agenda to promote the reunification of all peoples. Buju Banton is the ideal reggae ambassador of the moment to help make this global appeal relevant to a new generation of artists. As part of this obligation, the Border Splash is also working with globally connected influencers Generation Hip Hop – representing 58 countries around the world – by featuring unsigned and emerging world artists at the forefront of our global call for unity, diversity and inclusion on matters of climate change and beyond.  This will also include artists such as Brazilian rapper Kaos Mc, and Chinese Master singer Jane Maria who collaborated with African reggae legend Toyin Adekale on a reggae and opera fusion ‘Jasmine’ (let it show).  Border Splash will feature a host of well-known and emerging artists from around the world.

For further information please contact:

  • Corin SmithEvents Coordinator, Emperial Group / (441) 518-1700 /This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
  • For Tickets & Show Info:DangerZoneMusicGroup.com

 

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Prominent actor Leonardo DiCaprio recently took a moment to reflect on Bermuda’s decision to protect at least 20 percent of our waters, sharing the announcement with his more than 19 million followers on Twitter.

In his tweet, Mr. DiCaprio said, “Bermuda announces it will fully protect at least 20% of its waters in #MPAs as the newest Blue Prosperity Coalition partnership.”

Known for his roles in a long list of high profile films including The Basketball DiariesTitanicDjango Unchained, and others, Mr DiCaprio also has a long history as an environmental activist.

Via his Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation – an organization “dedicated to the protection and wellbeing of all Earth’s inhabitants” – the actor helps to support environmental projects around the world.

Earlier this month, the Ministry of Home Affairs, the Waitt Institute, and Bermuda Institute of Ocean Sciences [BIOS], signed a Memorandum of Understanding [MOU] to form the Bermuda Ocean Prosperity Programme.

“Through this partnership, Bermuda will create a binding ocean plan to sustainably manage and improve ocean industries like fishing and tourism while at the same time preserving 90,000 square kilometers [50,000 square miles] of Bermuda’s waters, which total 465,000 sq. kilometers [ sq. miles], in fully protected areas [no fishing, extraction, or destruction of any kind is allowed],” a spokesperson said at that time.

“This process will be based on scientific, legal, and socio-economic assessments of the island and will be designated and implemented by 2022.

“Utilizing marine spatial planning [MSP], new inshore and offshore zones will aim to preserve commercially important fish stocks, migratory routes for marine mammals, and deep-sea ecosystems like seamounts and corals while allowing for responsible development of marine industries.”

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